Tea prices in Russia set to rise with India ban

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Moscow, Jan 28 (UNI) Tea prices are expected to rise by 30 per cent after a ban on Indian plant products came into effect today, although special regulations may be introduced for tea and coffee imports, Russian media reports said.

The Federal Service for Veterinarian and Vegetation Sanitary Supervision (Rosselkhoznadzor) introduced the ban after a shipment of Indian sesame seeds was found to contain khapra beetles recently.

Russia's tea stocks are sufficient to last a month, after which there will be significant difficulties because the country gets one-third of its tea from India, the government-controlled newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta stated.

The insects can cause 225 million dollar worth of damage if they infested the country's stocks and that prices can rise 20 to 30 per cent, Russian news agencies reported.

The deputy head of the Russian Tea and Coffee Association, Ramaz Chanturia said that an agreement had been reached with Rosselkhoznadzor about special regulation for tea and coffee, Interfax news agency reported.

Mr Chanturia said the relevant documents had been drawn up and he hoped they would be approved today.

UNI XC PDT HT1729

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